Since the earth-shattering, world changing afternoon in early April, Senator Barack Obama has voted on such diverse issues as Medicare, Veterans Affairs, Flood Insurance, and the U.S. Budget. He voted on the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act and the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. Perhaps you are not completely sure what all of those votes were about. That's okay: it's not as though you cast any. And neither did U.S. Senator John S. McCain.
Introduced in House
Passed/agreed to in House: On motion to suspend the rules and pass the bill, as amended Agreed to by the Yeas and Nays: (2/3 required): 355 - 59 (Roll no. 443).
Passed/agreed to in Senate: Passed Senate without amendment by Unanimous Consent.
Cleared for White House.
Presented to President.
Vetoed by President.
Passed House over veto: Two-thirds of the Members present having voted in the affirmative the bill is passed, the Passed by the Yeas and Nays: (2/3 required): 383 - 41 (Roll no. 491).
Passed Senate over veto: Passed Senate over veto by Yea-Nay Vote. 70 - 26. Record Vote Number: 177.
Became Public Law No: 110-275 [Text, PDF]
A little more background:
WASHINGTON - Members of Congress, led by Ways and Means Committee Chairman Charles B. Rangel (D-NY), voted Tuesday to override President Bush’s veto of H.R. 6331, the Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act of 2008.
An overwhelming, bipartisan majority of the House voted 383-41 to pass the bill and ensure that millions of seniors, military families and other beneficiaries would continue to receive the healthcare they need and deserve. The Senate soon followed with its own 70-26 vote ensuring that the measure would become law.
McCain missed one of the most important healthcare votes on 7/9/2008. He also missed the 7/15/2008 vote to overturn Dubya's veto of this bill.
I'm not a big Ted Kennedy fan, but Kennedy, whose diagnosis of brain tumor occurred in May of this year, made an effort to vote on 7/9/2008, for this bill. Obama voted both on the measure and to overturn the veto. You'll note there were 383 House votes and 70 Senate votes against the veto. And McCain?
Senator John McCain did not vote "Yes." He did not vote "No," either. He didn't vote. U.S. Senator John S. McCain had better things to do. Better things involving "health care," a phrase which appeared four times in his historic acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention.
McCain's words were historic because they laid out his Republican vision to capture the Republican White House from Republicans, for Republicans. A vision seen in action when Senator Kennedy voted "Yes" on "health care" while suffering from a malignant brain tumor and Senator McCain had better things to do.
Better things to do on that day like launch a TV ad in which Senator John McCain praised Senator John McCain's love of his country.
Here's the text of that ad:
It was a time of uncertainty, hope and change. The Summer of Love. Half a world away another kind of love. Of country. John McCain. Shot down. Bayoneted. Tortured. Offered early release, he said no. He had sworn an oath. At home he turned to public service. His philosophy: before party, polls and self: America. A maverick.
There's nothing to enhance your maverick image quite like not voting in the Senate for nearly 6 months.